Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart: http://sothrichfield.podbean.com/
Psalm 118:1-9 (NIV)
1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. 2 Let Israel say: “His love endures forever.” 3 Let the house of Aaron say: “His love endures forever.” 4 Let those who fear the Lord say: “His love endures forever.” 5 When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord; he brought me into a spacious place. 6 The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?7 The Lord is with me; he is my helper. I look in triumph on my enemies. 8 It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in humans. 9 It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes.
The beginning of Psalm 118 focuses on God’s “steadfast love”. The idea is that God’s love always has been and always will be present. But though this Psalm sounds joyful and confident, Israel read this Psalm in a place of desperation, crying out with hope that the God who was faithful in the past would remain faithful and bring salvation. The life of faith is not comfortable or easy. If it is then why would the writer need to “take refuge” or need help from God? The life of faith is a constant remembering that although many things in life will promise to give us what we want, only God will truly provide what we need and that God is actively doing that! It is in those dark times that we need to cry out in thanks and praise and seek God’s steadfast and enduring love.